DALLAS - The American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and the Federation of European Heating and Air-Conditioning Associations (REHVA) signed a new memorandum of understanding calling for increased cooperation between the two associations at ASHRAE’s 2007 Winter Meeting.

“The challenges of the insecure energy situation and the public’s request for better and more secure buildings are huge,” said, Olli Seppänen, president of REHVA.

“ASHRAE and REHVA must work together to find the best sustainable technology for superior indoor environment for buildings. Coordination and cooperation is needed so that duplication of efforts is avoided and limited resources are used most efficiently.”

In Europe, the goal for energy saving is set at 20 percent by the year 2020. Steps toward this goal include an energy-efficiency and energy-services directive from April 2006 that sets the goal for energy savings in the member states at 1 percent per year during the next nine years, and requests national energy efficiency plans in June 2007. The European commission also prepares a directive for minimum energy performance standards for 14 priority energy products in 2007.ASHRAE is pursuing a similar goal, with hopes of achieving net-zero energy use by the year 2020.

“This agreement strengthens the long-time relationship between ASHRAE and REHVA,” said Terry Townsend, president of ASHRAE.

“We must continue to work together to gain technical knowledge and to share it. The engineers who belong to ASHRAE and REHVA are searching for new technology and guidance to develop safe, comfortable, and healthy energy-efficient buildings. This agreement encourages our organizations to work together to ensure more sustainable environments all around the world.”

Also during ASHRAE’s Winter Meeting, totaling 2,634 in attendance, an increase of nearly 200 over the 2006 Winter Meeting in Chicago, motivational speaker Diana Nyad, who set the world record for completing the longest swim in history - 102.5 miles - and Dennis Dimick, executive editor at National Geographic Magazine, spoke among other highly-attended, special events.

Publication date:02/19/2007